The Soil Health Institute (SHI), the nonprofit organization charged with safeguarding and enhancing soil health, has announced it will launch "Healthy Soils for Sustainable Cotton," a continuous engagement project to help U.S. cotton farmers increase soil health on their farms. In addition, the project will seek to quantify and expand the productivity, economic, and environmental benefits of soil health systems for those farmers. The initial pilot program, which will be conducted during 2019, will include cotton producers in Arkansas, Georgia, and North Carolina, according to Cristine Morgan, Ph.D., SHI Chief Scientific Officer.
"This farmer-focused education and training program will be developed and delivered by a qualified team comprised of technical specialists and successful cotton farmers," Morgan said. "In 2020, the program will expand to Mississippi, Texas, and California."
"Cotton producers who successfully complete the program will gain knowledge in soil health systems and become part of a network of farmers interested in increasing sustainability of cotton production," Morgan added.
According to David Lamm, Project Manager, the project will identify farmers in each state who are successfully adopting soil health systems. These farmers will provide insights into their soil health systems and help mentor others who participate in the training program. In addition, a local Soil Health Technical Specialist will help conduct farmer training and provide continuous technical support over at least the next two years.
Participating farmers will learn how to evaluate the health of their soils and how to improve that health for greater sustainability. Scientists from SHI will assist growers in assessing and improving drought resilience, economic benefits, and environmental outcomes of their practices.
"Healthy Soils for Sustainable Cotton" is supported through the generosity of the Wrangler® brand, the VF Corporation Foundation, and the Walmart Foundation.
For further information, visit www.soilhealthinstitute.org.
About the Soil Health Institute
The Soil Health Institute (www.soilhealthinstitute.org) is a non-profit whose mission is to safeguard and enhance the vitality and productivity of soil through scientific research and advancement. The Institute works with its many stakeholders to identify gaps in research and adoption; develop strategies, networks and funding to address those gaps; and ensure beneficial impact of those investments to agriculture, the environment and society.
Wrangler® apparel is available nationwide in mass market retailers, specialty stores, including work apparel chains, farm & fleet, and western stores, as well as through online and catalog retailers. To find a retailer or for more information on the Wrangler family of products, visit Wrangler.com or call 888.784.8571.
About VF Corporation
VF Corporation outfits consumers around the world with its diverse portfolio of iconic lifestyle brands, including Vans®, The North Face®, Timberland®, Wrangler® and Lee®. Founded in 1899, VF is one of the world's largest apparel, footwear and accessories companies with socially and environmentally responsible operations spanning numerous geographies, product categories and distribution channels. VF is committed to delivering innovative products to consumers and creating long-term value for its customers and shareholders. For more information, visit www.vfc.com.
About Philanthropy at Walmart
By using our strengths to help others, Walmart and the Walmart Foundation create opportunities for people to live better every day. Walmart has stores in 27 countries, employing more than 2.2 million associates and doing business with thousands of suppliers who, in turn, employ millions of people. Our philanthropy helps people live better by supporting upward job mobility and economic development for the retail workforce; addressing hunger and making healthier, more sustainably-grown food a reality; and building strong communities where Walmart operates and inspiring our associates to give back. To learn more about Walmart's giving, visit http://giving.walmart.com/foundation.